I’ve read an insightful article this week, about Why Network Security Vendors Should Stay Away From End Point Security, and Vice-Versa, underscoring a critical and often misunderstood point about endpoint security – that not everyone can do it. In other words, network security companies cannot be trusted to do endpoint security, and vice versa.
Along these lines, we often speak with companies that think they have endpoint security in place, but we later find that their existing systems are lacking in functionality. This leads to vulnerabilities and security gaps throughout the enterprise that often go undetected – and are eventually exploited.
The article appropriately notes, “One fallacy that will not die is the idea that, to grow, a vendor must be a full stack solution. [However], no matter how enthusiastic Wall Street may become there will never be a single vendor that dominates in the complete stack.”
This is especially true when it comes to endpoint security, and the article makes the following points about why network and endpoint security solutions in particular “do not mix”.
Buying centers – Endpoint security is managed by a different team within the enterprise than is security. That means different sales cycles, different sales teams, separate contracts, and most importantly, different skill sets. There is a broad gap between the Microsoft Windows experts responsible for laptop and desktop configuration and the wizards that maintain switches, routers, and firewalls.
Brand perception – Anti-virus products are a pain to work with. Every end user has had frustrating slowdowns, system crashes, and false positives from their endpoint AV. Those users include the network administrators. The last thing they want is a product from the same vendor on their network where slowdowns and crashes are much damaging to productivity.
Best of breed – Every organization needs the best firewall and the best endpoint protection for their environment. They will always make those decision independently.
We live in a business environment where cyber criminals and hackers are working 24/7 to identify and exploit vulnerabilities in networks. In addition, the number of endpoints on a network continues to grow exponentially especially as adoption of smart phones and tablets as well as specialized equipment such as bar code readers or point of sale (POS) terminals, continues to accelerate across industries.
It’s critical that companies consider their entire security portfolio, and understand that endpoint security is a unique discipline.
If you need an initial, free evaluation of your endpoint security, send me a message.